A hole in the Gatwick main runway, transport chaos across Europe due to unseasonal storms, a cross-continental epidemic of terrorist attacks, including the assassination of Jo Cox, the flames of Syria still raging unabated while the UK news is all of Brexit, British political convulsions, and the Clinton-Trump mud-flinging match: it’s been a pretty tempestuous summer so far, and if I’ve been quiet about it all that’s because I’ve been dealing with a crisis closer to home – more of which anon, in a later post. Today I just want to celebrate an event I’ve been dreaming of  for many years, and only recently discovered would actually happen: the North American release of my first novel, Seoul Survivors. How this day came about is a tale entwined with the fortunes of the global publishing industry, which you may or may not be interested in, but if the latter, hopefully…

Read more

Novelist Bridget Whelan and poet Sarah Hymas have both invited me to join ‘The Next Big Thing’, a game of blog-tag in which I interview myself about my next book, and introduce my readers to five more writer friends. Well, the next big thing for me (after my Christmas card list) is the Feb 2013 publication of my first novel, Seoul Survivors! Where did the idea come from for the book? I started writing Seoul Survivors in 1997. I was living in Seoul, teaching English and dancing the weekends away, but the presence of American soldiers, the sad history of a divided country, and the hyped-up military threat from a famine-stricken North Korea were now part of my daily reality.  I was also immersed in a fast-paced, hi-tech pop-culture that seemed years ahead of the West: Korean scientists were making headlines for their advances in cloning technology, and while no-one…

Read more

2/2